I want to see the sunset from Piazzale Michelangelo!
Right at noon in summer, I arrived in the capital city of Toscana. Had to spend the first 30 minutes in Stazione Santa Maria Novella trying to navigate to which direction the Hotel Panama was. There was no free-wifi and as far as I remember, the hotel location was not shown on the map at the station. It was 2 km away from city center. Luckily, I travelled with local, well not technically local from Firenze but local Italian. He managed to ask for a direction and made it to the hotel.
As soon as the check in process was done and the city map was given by the hotel, he made a quick plan of the things to visit that day before the magic sunset in Piazzale Michelangelo. I was weak at reading map and finding direction (I still am), so he was in charge for navigation under 29 degree Celsius of lovely sunny day.
Firenze was adorably irresistible for its atmosphere. The city was incredibly attractive, one of the place that, I swear to God, I will never forget. It is a jewel of Italy. Every corner of it spoke a thousand fantasies. The architecture, the small streets, the smell of the air, everything about it was lovable. Maybe only in Firenze, I loved hearing the voice of people talking loudly in a language that I barely understood, I loved getting lost in the small streets and ended up in the unknown church, I loved passing by the Arno river with the pigeons haunting me all over the way, I loved observing how aggressive the sellers in Ponte Vecchio trying to catch some clients. I was overwhelmed, I loved the city and the time flew very fast.
The moment just before sunset, he tried to find the right bus station to catch a ride to Piazzale Michelangelo. The queue for the bus was unbelievably crowded. I was nervous; it was the only chance to catch the sunset in Firenze. The next day should be Uffizi day before going back to Genova in the afternoon. He knew that it was important for me, he knew me too well. He led me to a direction where every desperate people seemed to go, to the walkway to Piazzale Michelangelo. “Heck yeah! Screw the bus; I’m walking up the way to the sunset point!” I told myself.
It was only less than 2 km hiking from Ponte Vecchio to Piazzale Michelangelo. He saw me looked a bit tired from the all-afternoon-walk and the 20 minutes hike, he ran to get some bottles of water for two while I stayed and guarded my sunset spot. Even without sunset, the panorama was breathtaking from up there. I couldn’t stop smiling staring at the city. He was probably proud of himself seeing me smiling when he was back joining me.
The earth was slowly rotating and manipulating our mind to believe that the sun is the one who left as the sky turn to dramatic orange. No dear, it isn’t the sun (il sole) that leaves, it’s the earth (la terre) that doesn’t stand still. If she stood still, everything inside her would have died and it wouldn’t have been worth it as he never leaves his axis. But he was a gentleman, he was.
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